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Title: Reflections on the tropical deforestation crisis
Authors: Laurance, William F.
Keywords: Deforestation
Ecosystem Function
Global Perspective
Man-environment Relations
Tropical Forest
Issue Date: 1999
metadata.dc.publisher.journal: Biological Conservation
metadata.dc.relation.ispartof: Volume 91, Número 2-3, Pags. 109-117
Abstract: Tropical forests do far more than sustain biodiversity; they are homes: to indigenous peoples, pharmacopeias of natural products, and provide vital ecosystem services, such as flood amelioration and soil conservation. At regional and global scales, tropical forests also have a major influence on carbon storage and climate. I highlight these benefits, then assess the pattern and pace of tropical forest destruction in the Americas, Asia, and Africa. Asia emerges as the most immediate concern, because it has less surviving forest than the other two regions and higher relative rates of deforestation and logging. At regional and national levels, however, there is enormous variation in rates of forest loss. I discuss some factors that tend to promote forest conversion in developing countries, and propose that four - human population pressure, weak government institutions and poor policies, increasing trade liberalization, and industrial logging - are emerging as key drivers of forest destruction.
metadata.dc.identifier.doi: 10.1016/S0006-3207(99)00088-9
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